New restaurant coming to Cleveland

The Wood Fire Grill will soon open in Cleveland and owners David and Theresa Butler appeared before the town council last week to ask several questions for which town attorney Alex Smith provided answers.

Only those 19 and older will be allowed to serve alcohol, and the council will allow alcohol to be served on the patio. The restaurant will not be able to sell alcohol after midnight.

The council voted to allow the sale of draft beer and the vote was unanimous except for James Bynum, who abstained. The Wood Fire Grill already has around 15 employees, and they are looking to hire more. They have a brick oven for pizza, and will serve traditional meat-and-vegetable plates for lunch. The Wood Fire Grill promises “to be like nothing else in Blount County,” according to the owners.

In other business, Major Jerry Jones told the council that the town needed to elect a new representative for the Blount County-Oneonta Chamber of Commerce. Jones nominated Laura Hill for this position and she was approved unanimously, except for Doug Hill who abstained.

The Park Board reported that the new recreational football league representatives had met with Councilman Tommy Swindle. They want more parking, and they are planning on raising funds to start using the football field next year. It was also reported that it was time to start getting ready for September’s Labor Day Picnic. The money they will need for posters and tickets is already in the budget.

At this point, the council went into executive session. After they came out, they discussed the current phone issues. Bynum gave the council members a budget from Otelco for the new fiber optic phones and Internet and also how much the council can save by getting rid of certain phone lines. The council passed a motion to go with 50 megabits to increase Internet speed for $139.95 a month.

The council passed a motion to hire one more full-time police officer so that all shifts can be covered. There will now be two full-time officers and one part-time officer who will work 16 hours per week. The council also announced the next Blount County- Oneonta Chamber of Commerce luncheon at the World Outreach Center with special guest speaker Dr. Phillip Cleveland, interim Alabama Superintendent of Education.

Present at last week’s meeting were councilors Sherry White, Glenn Puckett Bynum, Hill and Swindle, Mayor Jones, town clerk Mary Newsome, utilities superintendent Steve Pass, town attorney Alex Smith and members of the community. The Cleveland Town Council meets every second Thursday at 7 p.m.